Walk-through and Credits
Although the different sections of the site can be visited in any order, they have been arranged specifically from the most theoretical to the most applied topics. What follows is a brief description of the sections of the site.
The most theoretical section is, naturally enough, theory. Biodiversity theory can be quite complex, but many of the general concepts and approaches can be explained with a minimum of technical terms. Topics that are covered include the different levels of diversity and how they differ, how diversity increases and decreases in nature, a more detailed look at different aspects of biological diversity and how it is measured, and how diversity affects the stability and functioning of ecosystems.
Next is the ecozones section, which covers the climate and landforms of the country and one of the means of dividing Canada into ecologically distinct zones (ecozones). In this classification Canada has fifteen terrestrial and five marine ecozones. Biodiversity includes ecosystems as well as the species that live in them, and this section aims to show the diversity of the ecological systems of the country and how it affects the species living in them. Each ecozone has information on its climate, terrain types, and some of the species found there, in addition to photographs of the landscape.
Diversity follows certain trends, and the patterns section contains several of these trends, both theoretical and observed, and possible explanations for them. Trends observed over time and space, as well as Canadian trends, are covered.
The section on Canada's species provides images, descriptions, and distribution maps wherever possible for over fifteen hundred species found in Canada. Birds, mammals, and flowers are some of the more popular creatures, but they aren't the majority of species out there, and many important groups are often ignored. This section will also contain fungi, insects, and other groups that may not be as well known or well liked, but are still a vital part of biodiversity.
Next is a section on conservation issues which details the conflicts between human activities and biodiversity. The section begins by explaining why biological diversity is important to people, and the effects of our activities are having on the planet.
Governments use legislation to protect species and ecosystems from human activity. The legislation section contains a timeline of events and legislation that deals with Canada's biodiversity. Various organizations, some federal, some international, and some non-governmental, are detailed, along with several pieces of legislation that Canada has either enacted or international agreements it is a part of.
The references section is the most applied of all the sections; here are the sources that you can use for more information on any of the topics covered in the site. All of the sources that are cited in the other sections are found here, as well as other references that aren't specifically mentioned in the main body of the site. The references are organized in three ways: by the section they appear in, by their type (i.e. books, web sites, and papers in journals), and by author. In addition, the references are coded in terms of how complex they are.
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